O'GRADY, JOHN FRANCIS Name: John Francis O'Grady Rank/Branch: O4/US Air Force Unit: Date of Birth: Home City of Record: New Hyde Park NY Date of Loss: 10 April 1967 Country of Loss: North Vietnam Loss Coordinates: 175000N 1054600E (WE795662) Status (in 1973): Missing In Action Category: 2 Acft/Vehicle/Ground: F105D Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing) REMARKS: EJECTED - NO RADIO CONTACT Source: Compiled from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews. Updated by the P.O.W. NETWORK 2013. SYNOPSIS: Between April 17, 1965 and December 31, 1971, 43 American airmen were lost and listed as MIA in a 33.3 mile square window of the world known as the MuGia Pass on the North Vietnam/Lao border. Yet, over 13 years after the signing of the Paris Peace Accords and almost 13 years after the Department of Defense announced that no American POWs remained in Southeast Asia, not one of these men has been officially accounted for by either the Vietnamese or Lao governments, or officially recovered through US/Vietnamese/Lao negotiations. John O'Grady is one of those men. On April 10, 1967, Maj. John F. O'Grady led his element of F105D fighter/bombers through the Mu Gia Pass on the border of Laos and North Vietnam. Upon reaching the Vietnam side of the Pass, they turned back to initiate bombing attacks on selected targets. Upon reaching his target, O'Grady began his bombing run without opposition with his wingman 20 seconds to his rear. Approaching the target, he did not like his alignment. Rather than "drop and run", he aborted his first run and rolled in behind his wingman for a second attack, and his third exposure to enemy gunners. This time, O'Grady's aircraft was hit and he radioed, "Losing control, got to get out." The wingman at first could not locate O'Grady's plane or parachute, but did witness his bombs land directly on target. Scanning the skies, the wingman finally saw O'Grady's parachute in the air southwest of the target. However, the wind was blowing O'Grady back to the area of the strike. According to the senior officer in the air, they could have rescued him except for the wind. O'Grady's parachute disappeared the instant it touched down. The exact spot was pinpointed but rescue planes found to trace of him when they searched the area minutes later while under intense ground fire. Later intelligence indicated that O'Grady's target had been a well-organized, heavily armed battalion of enemy troops moving south through the Pass. The next day, two radio broadcasts out of Hanoi and Peking detailed the capture of American pilots, identifying one of the provinces as the one where O'Grady went down. He was the only many shot down in that province that day, and the only pilot lost that week over all of North Vietnam. Although the Air Force concluded that O'Grady was "in all probability taken captive", he was listed Missing in Action, and his status was never changed to Prisoner of War. It seems improbable that in one of the most heavily traveled sections of the Ho Chi Minh Trail, all 43 men lost went unnoticed by the other side. Although there is ample evidence to show otherwise, the governments of Laos and Vietnam claim no knowledge of the fates of these men. [r0641.97] PROJECT X SUMMARY SELECTION RATIONALE NAME: O'GRADY, John F., Maj, USAF OFFICIAL STATUS: MISSING CASE SUMMARY: SEE ATTACHED RATIONALE FOR SELECTION: After ejection from his stricken aircraft, Major O'Grady's parachute was seen twice in the air and once on the ground by a wingman of his flight. However, search and rescue aircraft were unable to re-locate his position. There have been no reports of Major O'Grady's possible capture or death. REFNO: 0641 19 Apr 76 (U) CASE SUMMARY 1. On . 10 April 1967, Maj John, F. O'Grady was the pilot of an F105D aircraft, (#624357, call sign Newark 03), the number three aircraft in a flight of four on an armed reconnaissance mission over the Mu Gia Pass in North Vietnam. Upon reaching Maj O'Grady maneuvered for a bomb run the target area, however, it was aborted because he was not lined up properly. He told the pilot of the number four aircraft to make his pass and he would follow. Number four made his pass and called off the target. He did not observe Maj. O'Grady making his bomb run but he did observe Maj. O'Grady's ordnance impact. (Ref 1 & 2) 2. A short time later, the flight heard Maj O'Grady say he was pulling off target to the southwest and was receiving ground fire. Then Maj. O'Grady stated, " I think I'm hit., got an overheat light." He said his engine was running but he was losing control and would have to get out. He was asked if he were in the target area but received no reply. Number four circled in the area and twice spotted Maj O'Grady's parachute in the air and once on the ground in the vicinity of grid coordinates (GC) WE 819 719. The pilot of the number four aircraft was too high to actually observe if Maj. O'Grady was in the parachute. (Ref 1- & 2) 3. After his election, no beeper signals were heard and no radio contact was made. (His aircraft may have crashed in the vicinity of (GC) WE 795 662.) Search efforts were initiated, but Maj O'Grady was never seen. (Ref 1 & 2) 4. During the existence of JCRC, the hostile threat in the area precluded any visits to or ground inspections of the sites involved in this case. This individual's -name and identifying data were turned over to the Four-Party Joint Military Team with a request for any information available. No response was forthcoming. Maj. O'Grady is currently carried in -the status of missing. REFERENCES USED 1. MSG (U), 355th CSG, 101505Z Apr 67. 2. RPT (U), 355th CSG, (CBPO-PA) AF Form 484 w/stmts, 14 Apr 67. * National Alliance of Families Home Page
The following was received from the family of Major
John O’Grady, shot down over
For more information visit Major O’Grady’s website at johnogradypowmia.com Please post a word of encouragement to the family in the
Guestbook Section and give this email the widest distribution possible.
Lynn Lynn O’Shea Director of Research National Alliance of Families For the Return of America’s Missing Servicemen World War II + Korea + Cold War + Vietnam + Gulf Wars + Afghanistan
Despite claims to the contrary on the record by the US
State Department, Patty O'Grady, Ph.D can confirm firsthand with multiple
source confirmation that the remains of Colonel John F. O'Grady USAF, POW/DIC
were recovered from the grave the soldiers who buried him protected for 45
On Thursday, May 24, 2012, Patty O'Grady confirmed that a full jawbone with 7 teeth were recovered by the Joint Vietnamese American MIA team.
On Friday, May 25, 2012, the Vietnamese shut down the excavation site allegedly for Dr. O'Grady's safety. The real reason was so the full remains could be recovered in secrecy and transported directly to
The site was then shut down permanently and left unprotected from 5:00 pm on May 24, 2012 until approximately 11:30 am on May 25, 2012. No
However, his daughter would not leave - under threat of arrest, deportation, robbery, assassination, emotional blackmail, and primitive living conditions she vowed to stay.
Dr. O'Grady noticed activity at the site on Friday. Small groups of workers going up the mountain to the site to dig. She contacted US State Department to confirm excavation has not resumed. She asked again for a briefing and was told "nothing to report" and "site still shut down". About mid morning she noticed an SUV with military officer (national uniform) standing beside the trail workers were using to go to gravesite parked south toward Dong Hoi. A large truck was parked on opposite side of the road facing North toward Vinh and
As Patty walked to investigate and take photographs, the villagers were animated and approaching her - hugging her, shaking her hand. Many were crying. "Your father!! Your father!!!" They pointed to the hill and then the truck. They were nodding and saying, "Yes! Yes!" with great excitement!!
The SUV left. The truck pulled away with a local villager driving who slowed down next to her and with a big smile shaking his head up and down saying, "Yes! Yes!" "Father!! Father!!" The truck drove away and the village returned to normal. The Vietnamese and Americans may return tomorrow - perhaps today to dig again but will not "find his remains."
Patty knows they already have him. On this Memorial Day, he will finally be on his way home.
Just as An and Thiet promised, his dog tags were found with him.